RIP Sprinkle


Yesterday we said farewell to Sprinkle, our beloved Burmese, after having shared our lives with her for just over nineteen years.  The house is empty without her and her absence makes us realise how much she meant to all of us who knew her.

Born on the fourth of July 1999, and christened La Berni Katya, we renamed her Sprinklefeather and she became known as Sprinkle.  Many neighbours looked after her in her youth when she was prone to wander, but she settled into our home in Prestwick Village when we moved here three years ago and seldom left the house during that time.

As Gillian said, she was the coolest cat, and had us firmly under her thumb at all times!

A Weekend with the Twins

We were delighted when Andrew and Michael brought their families (sans James, unfortunately) to Hermanus for the weekend, but sorry that David could not make it. The weather was warm and we had some good walks and a fine lunch at Stanford Harvest.  Our walk up Adder’s Ladder to Kanonkop in the early morning was especially good and we enjoyed a gourmet breakfast at the summit before venturing down through the magnificent displays of Roella incurva on the south facing slopes.

We were also lucky enough to see some good birds, including Cape Rock Thrush, Neddicky, Cape Siskin, African Paradise Flycatcher, Cape Grassbird and others.

‘River Queen’ continued

Our visit to ‘River Queen’ included some birding and we managed to see 73 species in the immediate area, but strangely, no Kingfishers.  We also walked in the surrounding veld and noted a few interesting flowers, the most exciting one being an Orchid, Holothrix, but we were unable to identify the species.

Keagan picked up my camera and showed his skill as a portrait photographer with some good images.

A Weekend on the Breede River at ‘River Queen’

Our annual family get-together took place over the long weekend at ‘River Queen’ on the Breede River just downstream from Malgas.  It was a large and funky house that could cater for all 14 of us and we had a wonderful re-union, with lots of superb food and great company.

Sadly the weather was not what it might have been, but that did not stop the fun, although it did not make for good fishing!  The braai was in constant use and the quality of the meals was outstanding!

All the grandchildren are teenagers for the first time, and it has been interesting to see them grow from babies at our first re-union, to what they are today.  We are very proud of them all!

The place itself was fascinating! There was so much interesting ‘stuff’ everywhere, in the garden, on the walls and on every surface. It offered the photographer an opportunity to capture some beautiful textures and compositions.

Sunday on the Palmiet River

Following our return to Hermanus from a very successful 5 week birding trip, Gillian and Andrew asked us to join them for a picnic and walk along the Palmiet river in the Kogelberg on Sunday. It was a beautiful, if cool day and we really enjoyed seeing the river running strongly after the rains of the previous two days.

Our picnic was wonderful – if excessive.  We seemed to have too many good things to eat and some chilled wine washed it all down well!  We returned to our cars, well satisfied after ten vigorous kilometres.  The beauty of the mountains and valley is something that one cannot easily forget and we will return often to this lovely area.


Yesterday we met at the beautiful Jonkershoek Valley for a hike up the valley. Being Easter Saturday there were many people out enjoying the day, despite the strong south-easterly wind that was funneling down the valley. We stopped in the stream bed for a snack and Gillian surprised us with some really tasty snacks for lunch – five star stuff!! – before returning to our cars and setting off to Atlantic Beach.

A Weekend in Knysna

When Michael and Nicky went to East London to represent their province in the Masters’ Interprovincial Hockey Tournament, we spent the weekend in Knysna with Travis and Robyn.  This gave us the opportunity to do some birding – a walk at Belvedere revealed three Olive Woodpeckers, some Swee Waxbills, a pair of Blue-Mantled Crested Flycatchers and a Klaas’s Cuckoo – in that order!  These are not common birds, so we were thrilled to see them so easily.

We also enjoyed walks in the Rheenendal Forest and at Leisure Isle.  I had a chance to photograph Robyn at home and then again when we took her to her riding lessons – where she showed us how well she handles her favoured mount, Coffee.